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(BPT) - The sunshine and blooms are sure signs spring is here to stay, and while Mother Nature may be tempting you to come outside and play, thousands of people are participating in an annual ritual inside the home: spring cleaning.
It's time to open the windows, refresh your closets and eliminate the dust, dirt and germs that accumulate throughout your home. Bacteria can be hiding in little-known places, such as clean laundry, so it's important to take precautions, especially for households with children.
Rachel Zoe, designer, entrepreneur and mother of two boys, believes spring cleaning is a time to not only refresh your closet, but your home and health. In her own words, she shares her top tips for spring cleaning.
1. Clean out your closets.
Spring clean your home by cleaning out your family’s closets. It's so important to keep your wardrobe updated and get rid of the pieces you don't wear. It is as rewarding mentally as it is physically.
2. Rethink traditional laundering methods.
I was surprised to learn that regular detergent alone doesn’t kill all bacteria on laundry. This means that even if laundry looks and smells clean coming out of the wash, it could still contain bacteria. In my household, we take care of laundry by washing dark items in cold water to prevent colors from bleeding, and then add new Lysol Laundry Sanitizer into the rinse cycle. It’s a groundbreaking product that kills 99.9 percent of bacteria in laundry loads in hot, warm or cold water!
3. Wear lightweight fabrics.
My go-to #OOTD for spring (outfit of the day, for non-techies) is a light jacket, a pair of wood stacked heels and a printed sundress. Wearing lightweight, machine-washable fabrics like cotton makes doing laundry a breeze, and by layering pieces, you can wear your favorite looks year-round.
4. Go the extra mile.
If I could wrap my kids in a bubble or make them wear helmets daily, I would! My maternal protection instincts are at a 10 from the moment I wake up to the moment I go to bed, and I encourage all moms out there to take the extra step to keep their families safe from harm, including potentially harmful germs.
5. Change clothes when you get home.
My kids play outside every day and bring home all kinds of germs from school and playdates, so I always have them change their clothes right when they walk in the door to prevent germs from spreading around the house.
6. Wash often to prevent bacteria-spread.
I try to do laundry every other day in an effort to conserve water, but I do laundry most often when my kids are sick. Remember to change bedding frequently and keep towels fresh to help prevent the spread of bacteria.
7. Disinfect commonly used items most frequently.
My older son, Skyler, has held onto a small crib pillow that he now uses in his big-boy bed, and my younger son, Kaius, has a doggie stuffed animal attached to a blanket that he lovingly refers to as "woof woof." These items definitely get a lot of love, so I make sure to wash and sanitize them both constantly!
8. Follow label instructions.
My kids live in one-piece jumpers, specifically so they can run around and play comfortably. Those usually get destroyed first, but I do my best to keep them in good shape. Remember to read labels and washing instructions carefully, and hang to dry.